Updated: Nov 5, 2020
Getting your children started on an instrument can be challenging. Let us simplify it for you!
In today’s world there are so many options for just about everything. Instrument lessons are not excluded from that. I know tons of parents who want their kids to learn to play an instrument, I mean, who wouldn’t! What I hear all the time from these parents is that they are intimidated by trying to find a good teacher or buy the right instrument, so they never get their kids started.
There is also the time commitment, the fact you’ll have to buy an instrument, help keep your kids motivated, drive them to the lessons each week, pay for them etc. etc. Starting instrument lessons for your kids is a commitment that many parents never take on. Before they know it, it’s too late and their kids missed their chance to learn to play an instrument.
I completely understand. The worst-case scenario is that we do all the work to find a teacher, our child starts taking lessons and doesn’t like them. They are now turned off from learning to play an instrument and it was all our fault. Not to mention the money you spent on that new digital piano!
I have a solution for you! Online instrument lessons!!
Let me define two types of online instrument lessons before we go any further. First, there are live online instrument lessons with a teacher and student interacting on Zoom, or something similar. Second, there are virtual instrument lessons that are in video format, available for students to use at their convenience, where kids follow along and learn to play an instrument at their own pace. There are advantages and disadvantages to both.
I want to focus on virtual lessons that can be done at your own pace and why this can be a fantastic way for your child to learn an instrument. Here are some of the reasons why these lessons are great:
1. Lessons are shorter, making it easier for your child to stay interested
2. Kids can repeat the lessons as many times as they want
3. They are convenient
4. The lessons can be done from almost anywhere (that you can take your instrument)
5. Why Not Make Screen Time Educational?
6. They are a great value
1. LESSONS SHORTER, MAKING IT EASIER FOR YOUR CHILD TO STAY INTERESTED
While one-on-one lessons can be great with the right teacher, online, video-based lessons can be cut into shorter chunks, giving kids small, simple tasks to learn on their instrument. For example, in our kids music learning platform, My Music Workshop, our instrument lessons are grouped into smaller 2-5 minute chunks. We want kids to feel successful, stay engaged, and progress at a comfortable pace. Sometimes, kids want to do a few lessons at a time, great, they can do that! One music learning day can be just a few minutes and another can be longer. This can depend on the time they have, the difficulty of the lesson, the amount of practice they can dedicate, and so on. By the way you can give My Music Workshop and our online instrument lessons a try for free by clicking HERE!
2. KIDS CAN REPEAT THE LESSONS
When it comes to learning an instrument, repetition is key. At My Music Workshop our instrument lessons are built to allow kids to repeat them as many times as they want. They can play along with the lessons until they are ready to move on to the next and go back to a lesson that they haven’t done in a while. By having the lessons available at any time, this is easy and convenient. In my experience both teaching and playing an instrument learning doesn’t happen in a straight line. You often have to circle back and revisit ideas to deepen them, even after moving on.
My Music Workshop students can do more than one lesson per day or per week, it’s up to them (and you). Our job is to keep them interested, make it fun, teach them, and get them excited about learning an instrument!
As with many things, learning to play an instrument is a process. We want to create many successes at first so that kids are invested in playing and learning. As they progress and grow they will have the opportunity for longer learning an practice sessions to meet them at their stage of development and proficiency. When students are on the younger side, I believe short chunks build confidence and success that keep kids wanting to learn and play more!
3. DO LESSONS WHEN THEY ARE CONVENIENT FOR YOUR FAMILY
Hey, I’m all for consistency, but it’s 2020, we live busy lives, schedules change, we go on trips, kids get colds and miss commitments and on and on. That said, the more convenient instrument lessons are for you child, the more likely they are to stay with them. Maybe this week Monday is a perfect day for your child to sit down and learn, next week maybe its Wednesday.
We don’t want to get too far off track, lose weekly consistency etc. but, the key is to make sure kids are spending time each week (or even better, a few times a week), with their instrument lessons. At My Music Workshop we offer virtual piano, ukulele and drum lessons, kids can do at their convenience. We want you and your kids to love them. Give My Music Workshop a try for free by clicking here.
4. LESSONS CAN BE DONE ANYWHERE (THAT YOU CAN TAKE YOUR INSTRUMENT
Of course, kids aren’t going to do their piano lessons in the middle of a restaurant, but, they can do the lesson at Grandma’s house or even on a park bench. If you and your family travel, or your kids spend time outside of home, they can do their instrument lesson there. Why not, doing something valuable and educational is great no matter where kids are. In addition, My Music Workshop has a hold bunch of other musical lessons that are not catered to a specific instrument. We teach them about rhythm, reading music, music theory, rhyming, song patterns and lots more. If your child is away from their instrument they can still be learning music!
Of the three instruments that we offer lessons for at My Music Workshop, piano, ukulele and drums, the ukulele is the easiest to travel with. However, you can get an inexpensive Casio keyboard that you can also travel with (assuming you might have a piano or digital piano at home that you can’t take with you), that can work well for occasional lessons and a bit of practice. We recommend the Casio SA-76 or the Casio SA-46 as inexpensive but high quality, small, portable keyboards*.
*These Casio keyboards aren’t meant for the serious piano student. They are great as something kids can travel with or for younger children who are just starting to get exposed to playing different instruments.
**We recommend the Yamaha P-1 for more serious piano playing. This is a powerful and very nice digital piano that will last a long time, if taken care of.
You can visit our instrument shop with links to buy great kids instruments on Amazon if you click here.
5. WHY NOT MAKE SCREEN TIME EDUCATIONAL?
Let’s face it, kids tend to get at least some screen time each week. Why not give your children something valuable to do and learn why they are on the computer, tablet, or phone? My Music Workshop’s music lessons and instrument lessons are a great way to allow kids some screen time that’s also educational. I do this with my kids. When they ask to watch a kids show or look at my phone I tell them “you can do My Music Workshop.” They’re excited to get a little time on a screen and I feel good about what they’re looking at and learning. It’s a win, win!
My Music Workshop offers its full program, with piano, ukulele and drum lessons as well as tons of other lessons on reading music, exploring instrument, original songs and more for as low as 9.99 per month (this is for a yearly subscription, monthly is $15.99/ month). You can’t beat the price for kids to learn music. It’s something that can be cancelled if your kids don’t use it anymore and it’s super convenient for them and for you. You can try it out for free by visiting www.mymusicworkshop.com.
Most important to us at My Music Workshop is that kids experience the joys of music. Our musical philosophy is to make learning music as fun as it can be. I’ve told people it’s like putting a vitamin in a scoop of ice cream. The kids want to eat the ice cream (enjoy watching the lessons), and the nutrition of a vitamin (learning a lot about music), while they’re at it.
We’ve worked with children for nearly 12 years and have our own unique way of teaching music to kids. We hope you and child love My Music Workshop and that your child forms a relationship with music that lasts a lifetime. Thanks and if you want your child to try out My Music Workshop click here to start out for free!
Elias Berlinger is the co-founder of My Music Workshop, a music education company based in Southern California. Having taught music to thousands of students ranging from toddlers to senior citizens Elias has an understanding of what it takes to start playing an instrument at any age. Many of his former students include sports and music celebrities and their children. Elias, along with his musical wife, who is also a teacher, Lianna created My Music Workshop in 2009. It’s a world of learning music available conveniently online. Be sure to check it out here if you haven’t already!